Posted on February 07, 2013 at 1:31 PM by Johnz
The Long Island Royals hosted their first Ronald McDonald House Championship Game in Dix Hills Arena last night, defeating the Empire Junior Hockey League's New York Apple Core 4-1 to earn the trophy.
While the event was an exhibition game for both sides, the Royals showcased their lineup depth and got offensive power and stingy defense from younger players.
Royals forward Joe Bonsignore scored the first of Long Island's four goals halfway through the first period to send the team into the locker room with a 1-0 lead before the game's only intermission. Forward Zachary Shields got hot midway through the second period, scoring off two deflections in a five-minute span to extend the lead to 3-0.
Apple Core would show signs of life a little later in the period, snapping an 0 for 14 power play drought on a goal from forward Nolan Pues. Shields completed the natural hat trick a few minutes later however with a shot that sailed past Apple Core backup goaltender Christoph Mutschin. Shields was named Player of the Game.
Bonsignore and Shields came into yesterday's matchup with four goals between them all season. Long Island used all three goalies in the contest with Corey Cairo playing the first five minutes. Patrick Cavanaugh split the rest of the game with Trevor von Kampen, who surrendered the only Apple Core goal. Royals defensemen Mike Cartwright, Brandon Keating, Chris Zaverdas and Chris Calandra kept the Royals lead in tact with a bruising forecheck throughout the evening.
Admission to the game was a suggested donation of $10 with all proceeds going to the Long Island Ronald McDonald House in New Hyde Park, N.Y. New York Community Foundation, Astoria Federal Savings and Capital One Bank partnered with the charity to sponsor the game.
Head Coach Ken Hoey and the rest of the Royals will look to seize the Mullen Division crown with two-game series against the New Jersey Junior Titans this weekend at Howell Ice World.
Story by Kevin McCall